Husband Admits Killing Wife, Drowning Dog As Part of Murder Cover Up

A Greek helicopter pilot has admitted to killing his 20-year-old wife in a suburb of Athens and then staging a robbery to deflect suspicion.

Babis Anagnostopoulos, 33, was arrested on Thursday after he attended a memorial service held for his late-wife, Caroline Crouch, that took place on the Greek island of Alonnisos, where she grew up after moving from the U.K. when she was 8 years old.

Anagnostopoulos had initially told police that Crouch was killed after burglars broke into their home, in the Athens suburb of Glyka Nera on May 11, tied him up and threatened their infant daughter with a gun.

The 33-year-old said that the burglars then strangled Crouch to death and fled with around €15,000 ($17,802) in cash, after fatally choking the couple's dog and hanging its body from a banister, according to Sky News.

The police offered a €300,000 ($356,041) reward for information that would help them track down the burglars, but had not announced any other suspects by the time of Anagnostopoulos' arrest.

The Hellenic Police confirmed to Greek state TV on Thursday evening that after a lengthy investigation into the murder, Anagnostopoulos had confessed to the killing and to staging the break-in, after being interviewed by the authorities for around eight hours.

The police had said they were initially confused by Anagnostopoulos' version of events, as they could not find any evidence of the thieves having been in the home. They also said that a biometric watch worn by Crouch showed that her heart stopped beating hours before he said she had died.

The authorities also investigated the movements of Anagnostopoulos through his cell phone, discovering that he was walking around the couple's home at the time that he had said he had been tied up by the gang, according to the BBC.

The recorded time from data cards that were removed from the home's security system also did not match up with the times provided by Anagnostopoulos to police.

Nikos Rigas, the deputy chairman of the police officers' association of Athens, told state TV that Anagnostopoulos "tried to create a crime scene environment that looked convincing: The dog was killed, and his baby was placed next to the body of the murdered mother."

After being questioned by local reporters, Hellenic Police spokesperson Apostolos Skrekas refused to say whether Anagnostopoulos had acted on his own in Crouch's killing.

On May 16, just a few days after Crouch's death, Anagnostopoulos paid a tribute to his late wife on his Instagram page, writing: "Always together. Farewell, my love."

Newsweek has contacted the Hellenic Police for comment.

Husband admits killing wife in Greece
Shallow depth of field image taken of yellow law enforcement line with police car and lights in the background. A helicopter pilot has admitted to killing his 20-year-old wife Caroline Crouch in a suburb of Athens, Greece, in May. carlballou/iStock / Getty Images Plus